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Monthly Archives: August 2017

Sometimes, all of the things

Sometimes in the online writing lark, all of the things happen in no short order and with too little time to do anything but mainline coffee and keep your head down. These last few months have been like that for this writer and my associate comrades…

So, without further ado my Kittlings and newsbeasts, here is my news round-up for all of the things that have been happening in ianland:


The City of Kings

  • Rising Blades is go! Frank West Games, the adorable peeps behind The City of Kings are pleased to publically announce Rising Blades, their next follow-on game set in the same fantasy universe as The City of Kings. It’s a shorter, fast-and-furious game, where players take on the roles of the anti-hero Champions of Vesh! Look-ee, there’s even a press release and everything.
  • The City of Kings has been at Gen Con 2017! [More photos, Frank!]
  • And last but certainly not least, Frank West will be delivering the inaugural Board Games Developer session over at EGX this year, so, if you’re free late Sept and are in the Birmingham area, then have a wander over and say hi.


Ravendesk Games

  • Lee and the team have also been in sunny Indiana for Gen Con 2017 [did they swap notes about miscreant writers, one wonders XD]!
  • Take a look at one of their pretty sweet playing card perks for the Herald Game (get ’em while you can, folks). Art by the super-talented Tom Rogers.



With much pricking of thumbs and gnashing of teeth, The Novel of Great (and shiny) Worth is over the dead waters of the Middles, and is now racing ahead, with the multiple plot lines starting to bear fruit and tell me what is happening, rather than the other way around*



  • Bramble Bee, the new kitten in the household, continues to terrorize our other two cats but at least they aren’t freaking out every time they see it.
  • A mighty shed was erected.
The Mighty Shed
The Mighty Shed (before completion)


[*This is really a thing that should be talked about, probably; the planting and growing of a novel. At the start there is lots of groundwork. Sinking down plot lines and character motivations, weaving them together into a timeline to make a glorious, chaotic mess – but hopefully, after a while, those shoots start to sprout all by themselves, bearing strange mutant fruit all of their own devising… and that is when you’re into the harvesting stage…]


Wake up, bleary-minded. Bed is warm with the press of bodies (wife and cats) and the light is just ’round the corner from arrived. Pray. Water. Then strong coffee. Try not to trip over the cats now chirruping about the kitchen floor. Get washed, open the windows. Take a moment to be an outside creature; wordlessly snuffing at the ozone and looking at the plants. More nicotine and caffeine in equal measures. Make sure that everything and everyone is fed and watered before the business of the day starts properly. Later I’ll boot up the laptop and check the world hasn’t done anything stupid while the sun hasn’t been around this side of the hemisphere. Morning injections of data supplied through the crackling radio, or from the email lists. At some point stretches, and a (very) brief attempt at some yoga.

And lastly; a little white pill.

Fascist Modernisms

Given the tragic news of recent days, a lot of talk today about the nature of modern fascism; where the blame lies, where it was born, and what to do about it.

Are the white, “Western” working-class fascists and racists? Of course not. But they’re being gamed  and their identities hijacked by some hate groups who are. It was ever thus, sadly. In the war of stories, these hate groups are presenting an easy, fully-packaged myth of the “white race in peril” with a whole cast of villainous groups, figures, races and nations. Just blame this list and you’ll “get your country back” as they say. The same impulse is true here in the UK as it is in America. Brexit didn’t mean Brexit. Brexit meant something else entirely, something a lot uglier.

Well, it seems to me that the country was sold a long time ago. Our trades were devalued by the free market. Our communities shattered by corporate over community investment, our houses priced out of the average reach, communal spirit and camaraderie effectively destroyed in the UK as housing units become means for generating as much income from the least amount of people. Where is there room to grow a community garden? To free-roam? To produce and harvest collective energy systems?

A good story can save a life or change the world, a bad one can blind you.


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